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Capitol Hill Block Party 2010

I decided early on Friday that I wasn't going to bother taking extensive notes on the bands all weekend, and instead just try to jot down a few quick impressions, basically a sentence's worth. And I'm now taking a little time to clean some parts up a bit and add just a few details in a few places, but I'm not even bothering to make these complete sentences. So, here are my mostly-unedited impressions of the weekend.

  • Ravenna Woods: folk rock, Fleet Foxes like, very good
  • Yeasayer: solid, new stuff sounded good, several from the first album too, still don't excite me as much as I'd expect
  • Head Like A Kite: always a crazy party with lots of guests, good to see Asy of Smoosh do two vocal turns ("Let's Start It All Again" and "Daydream Vacation"), is Graig Markel actually part of the live lineup or does he just show up regardless?
  • Holy Fuck: sounded pretty cool, weirdly only recognized "Lovely Allen" even though KEXP plays a bunch of their songs a lot
  • MGMT: poor muddy sound for some reason, also even more packed than for Sonic Youth last year, only listened to first three and that included "Electric Feel"
  • Fruit Bats: an "oh THESE guys!" band—recognized them when they played "When You Love Somebody"—little more country than I usually care for but liked them
  • The Redwood Plan: WOW, bar set very high, totally rock, look like they're having so much fun, Lesli Wood is cooler than you'll ever be, I should own their album
  • !!!: playing a short set live on air for KEXP, easily vaulted the bar set by the Redwood Plan, short but intense high-energy set, leader is crazy-awesome dancer, glad I got to see them up close since I won't get near mainstage, I should also own their albums
  • Blitzen Trapper: country-ish, sounded okay but nothing stood out
  • Aveo: also playing a live on air set for KEXP, nice stuff, again nothing stood out to me
  • !!!: full set at mainstage, crowd plus noise made it hard to enjoy, but I found spot in the middle back that worked, sounded good but definitely could use better venue, also kind of all blended together
  • Zola Jesus: very goth, slow paced—even the ones with more of a beat, voice more like Siouxsie Sioux than Bat for Lashes, also she is totally a four-foot-tall elf queen—big voice in a tiny body that looked ageless in an ancient/youthful way

KEXP was hosting additional sets all weekend in the Caffe Vita Bean Room (as mentioned above); I staffed the entrance in the afternoon, where I heard:
  • Brite Futures: new name for Natalie Portman's Shaved Head, same shrill synthpop, but the kids love 'em and they are good, just in small doses
  • Villagers: Brit dude on guitar doing folk singer-songwriter thing, sounded good
  • A Million Years Ago: noisy pop, busy at the entrance so didn't get to pay much attention, sounded worth catching again
  • Damian Jurado: folk rock, again busy at the entrance and didn't pay much attention
After my shift was done, I went to see:
  • S: project of Jenn Ghetto from Carissa's Wierd [sic], low-key performance, two songs sounded very familiar but thought they were covers (Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Bjork)—cool if covers, still good if not
  • THEE Satisfaction: another KEXP on-air set, very short, nice though, smooth & sweet vocals/raps, soulful
  • Hey Champ: high energy synthpop, lots of fun, teased beginning of "Africa", got a little crowded for my liking but still ok
  • Truckasaurus: experimental electroclash, kinda noisy at times but good, dancy, used sample of that Mel Gibson phone call business at one point and really can we all just forget about that?
Saturday was the best day for me. I knew I wanted to see The Redwood Plan and though I waffled a bit about whether to make the effort to get there on time, I did make a point of doing so... and they ended up starting 45 minutes late, because Blonde Redhead had cancelled so the whole mainstage schedule was shifted later. Anyhow, they were more than worth the effort to get there on time and totally blew me away. And then I got to see !!! up close and that was just as amazing, more than I'd expected.


( 1 wrote — Write )
(Deleted comment)
Jul. 26th, 2010 09:30 pm (UTC)
They have villagers in Britain!

And, ummm... Ireland is part of the British Isles.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
( 1 wrote — Write )

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